Article From: 6/15/2004 Production Machining
The company will launch the release of Version 7.0 of its CAD/CAM software for CNC mills, lathes, wire EDM, turn-mill centers and Swiss-type lathes. This software features a range of new functionality, including the company’s surface machining wizard (SMW) and enhanced 3D machining simulation.
The SMW implements toolpath generation and machining strategies for milling of free shape, 3D surfaces on machining centers (PartMaker/mill) or turn-mill centers (PartMaker/turn-mill) and Swiss-type lathes (PartMaker/SwissCAM) equipped with live tooling. The company says the software’s SMW is designed as an optional module for current and future users. The new software employs algorithms that are said to cut down the time required for parts manufacturing.
With SMW, the user has ability to machine the entire model or to select certain sections using the mouse. The company says the software operates without any intervention and produces tool paths as specified. Desired tool path geometry and the surface finish is obtained with appropriate choice of settings used to generate the tool paths.
The software’s machining simulation capability allows the user to see an extended CNC machining visualization within the work environment for turn-mill and SwissCAM applications. The company says this simulation includes the ability to simulate multiple turrets and spindles for turn-mill applications as well as gang slides, tool posts and turrets for Swiss-type lathes. This machining simulation is said to provide users with greater collision and interference detection within the software.
The software’s simulation also gives the ability to automatically compare a machined solid model to the geometric solid model initially imported.
Also included in the software is improved support for multi-axis lathes equipped with a B axis as well as five-axis machining centers. The software's B-axis module coupled with PartMaker Solids automates the programming of milling interpolation on an inclined plane. With the click of the mouse, the software is said to automatically extract the necessary surface orientation information from a solid model as required by the machine coordinate system. The geometry necessary to create part features is automatically converted to the machine coordinate system as well.
The software is said to include feature-specific enhancements including more powerful pocketing routines, improved thread milling strategies, greater control over cutter feed rates along with single tool paths and further automated grooving functions.